Photo courtesy Medicine Hunter

Cordyceps – Fungus Power!

Common Name

Dong Chong Cao

Botanical Name

Cordyceps Sinesis


Dong Chong Cao
Cordyceps Sinesis
Share on Facebook
Share via Twitter
Pin on Pinterest
Post on Linkedin
Send via Email
Share via ShareThis
Chinatown Treasures: Cordyceps

Watch "Ask Dr. Manny: Chinatown Treasures" on Fox News
The Medicine Hunter takes Dr. Manny to Chinatown in New York City to sample some unique fare, including “worms” that help to increase strength.

In a huge herb market about 850 miles west of Shanghai, I point to a pile of what look like dried worms, with a puzzled expression on my face. “Tochukaso,” says the herb dealer. I nod, recognizing the Chinese word for Cordyceps sinensis, one of the most prized agents in Traditional Chinese Medicine. In the wild, cordyceps is a parasitic fungus which grows on caterpillars on the high Tibetan plateau. But cordyceps is now also cultivated on wood and grains. Heralded in Chinese herbal texts for over 700 years, cordyceps is now trumpeted by science as well.

Traditionally cordyceps has been employed for purported benefits to the heart, and respiration, for its energy-boosting effects, and for anti-aging purposes. Remarkably, modern science is verifying all of these uses, and more. In human cardiovascular studies, use of cordyceps lowered serum triglycerides and cholesterol overall, and increased beneficial HDL levels. Cordyceps enhances nutritional blood supply to the organs and extremities, specifically increases blood supply to the brain, and defends the heart against stress.

Cordyceps boosts respiration and the body’s use of oxygen, and helps to improve cases of chronic asthma and bronchitis. Cordyceps also possesses antioxidants which retard cellular destruction, and demonstrates anti-inflammatory activity. As if that weren’t enough, cordyceps further helps to protect the liver and kidneys against damage.

In a number of competitive events, winning Chinese athletes have attributed their high performance in part to regular use of cordyceps. Their competitive success has led to investigation of cordyceps for energy, endurance and stamina. Analysis of cordyceps reveals natural substances which boost immunity, increase stamina, and improve recovery from fatigue. Results of various studies show that cordyceps does in fact enhance performance.

In elderly patients, cordyceps improved a number of quality of life parameters, including general physical condition, mental health, appetite, vitality, sexual drive and cardiac function. In effect, cordyceps helps to turn back the aging clock.

Remarkably, no down side or side effects are known for cordyceps. Is there an all-around supplementary super agent? Cordyceps is ample evidence that the answer is yes.